The Lost German Slave Girl: The Extraordinary True Story of Sally Miller and Her Fight for Freedom in Old New Orleans

The Lost German Slave Girl: The Extraordinary True Story of Sally Miller and Her Fight for Freedom in Old New Orleans

3.7 31
by John Bailey
     
 

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It is a spring morning in New Orleans, 1843. In the Spanish Quarter, on a street lined with flophouses and gambling dens, Madame Carl recognizes a face from her past. It is the face of a German girl, Sally Miller, who disappeared twenty-five years earlier. But the young woman is property, the slave of a nearby cabaret owner. She has no memory of a "white" past. Yet

Overview

It is a spring morning in New Orleans, 1843. In the Spanish Quarter, on a street lined with flophouses and gambling dens, Madame Carl recognizes a face from her past. It is the face of a German girl, Sally Miller, who disappeared twenty-five years earlier. But the young woman is property, the slave of a nearby cabaret owner. She has no memory of a "white" past. Yet her resemblance to her mother is striking, and she bears two telltale birthmarks. In brilliant novelistic detail, award-winning historian John Bailey reconstructs the exotic sights, sounds, and smells of mid-nineteenth-century New Orleans, as well as the incredible twists and turns of Sally Miller's celebrated and sensational case. Did Miller, as her relatives sought to prove, arrive from Germany under perilous circumstances as an indentured servant or was she, as her master claimed, part African, and a slave for life? A tour de force of investigative history that reads like a suspense novel, The Lost German Slave Girl is a fascinating exploration of slavery and its laws, a brilliant reconstruction of mid-nineteenth-century New Orleans, and a riveting courtroom drama. It is also an unforgettable portrait of a young woman in pursuit of freedom.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780786276219
Publisher:
Gale Group
Publication date:
06/02/2005
Edition description:
Large Print
Pages:
355
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.10(d)

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Lost German Slave Girl 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 26 reviews.
bevtherev More than 1 year ago
As they say, truth is stranger than fiction. This is indicative of this book, which tells of the horrid laws of slavery during the 1800's, and the true tale of a 3 year old child who had emigrated to Louisiana in the early part of the 19th century. After surviving a horrendous ocean voyage to America from Germany, where many died on this voyage, this child, as well as many others who were immigrants, were enslaved temporarily, regardless of their race. The child, however, had an olive complexion, and was taken to be a negro. After many years of being a slave, she was recognized by her godmother, who proceeded to try to get her freed. The story is compelling and should be read by all.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you have an interest in History, early New Orleans, slavery, or just a very good mystery, this would be a book that you can¿t put down until you finish it. I carried the book around with me until it was finished then wished it was longer. John Bailey has a gift for taking the facts and putting them into a readable narrative which turns history into an interesting and enlightening experience. His work was so well researched that I, as a native of the area, could find no place where he misrepresented the people, facts or language of old New Orleans and the Slavery and legal questions of the early 1800¿s. His method of introducing an explanation of the facts within the narrative gives the reader information supporting the story as it moves along. Quite a feat for a person who is not even from America. This is only his second book but I hope it is not his last.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very entertaining history. It becomes a supense story of whether Sally Miller will obtain her freedom and has a surprise ending.
loves-to-readVA More than 1 year ago
Interesting, holds your attention, but not one I'm running out telling people they should read. One new insight, I never know about the 'redemptioners' and the possible consequences of the practice. I think any one with a law background would be interested -again because it is a true story.
PatLee More than 1 year ago
The research is presented straight-forward and documents. A book that could be dry and lifeless. It is the exact opposite. I was caught in the story and rooting for the lost German slave girl!
Guest More than 1 year ago
During the 19th century, Sally Miller was found by Madame Carl Rouff and brings her to the village where German immigrants lived. And everyone recognizes her as Salome Muller, a lost German slave girl. She is a daughter of Daniel Muller who was sold to another slave owner who was from far away. So all the relatives and friends gets separated. Then they never heard from them ever. Sally Miller, by a help of the other German families tries to win a freedom from slavery. The whites, or Europeans, were to be indentured servants because they had to pay off debt that was to come to America. Sally's trial starts with her previous master, John Fitz Miller, the rich owner of slavery. Then it also includes with . John Miller then goes with research that Sally is not Salome and goes with how he bought her, how she didn't have any accents, and that her skin is a bit dark, not white. Then the Defense team with Upton's help proves about how Sally look just like her mother and that she has a mole. Also, with witnesses help, that she did have a German accent and that she was sold to Attakapa where John Miller's farm was. Many of the trials of her fails and people begins to give up. But Upton and Eva, her Godmother, helps her until the end, trying to look for more witnesses to prove. This book, also, shows some examples of many other trials that are similar to this and how the outcome was successful. It, also, shows how people were trying to win their freedom, not giving up, and how they want to prove that they have a right. In my opinion, I think that Sally Miller is not Salome Muller, but I am glad about how she freed herself from slavery, and how strongly her community fought for her. When I read this book, it seemed so realistic to me that this was actually happening now. If there is a time during the class, this book should be read to actually understand how these people felt and why they want freedom so much, that they could risk their life. Later, Sally Miller is freed following by the judges, and she tries to free her own children. This taught me how difficult it is to be freed. There is many ways to be freed, and if none of them works, then there is no way. This taught me how when slave is pregnant, then the children immediately becomes slaves. And the only way to free themselves is to pay certain amount of money or win their freedom someway. If I was one of the slave owner's daughter, I would want to end this and help the slaves with their life. I with everyone in 19th century would feel this way, so that there wouldn't be such thing as slavery since all human are equal. ^_^
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An excellent historical account of one of the most intriguing legal battles ever in Louisiana. The book is very well documented and footnoted, but it reads like a novel. The book has the historical accuracy of Twelve Years A Slave, the plot twists of Gone Girl, and the legal drama of a Law & Order episode.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very interesting story. The story really sucks you in and the history reads like a novel as opposed to dry facts.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
this is an amazing book. If you need to understand what it might be like to live in the skin of any of the many characters of this book, or to live in this era of time, delve in!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A fascinating story, but a dreadfully written book. The author is trying to tell two stories here. Many authors succeed in this kind of endeavor. He did not. The story of Sally Miller is amazing...as is the story of the history of laws governing slaves. I hope for readers' sakes, the author and/or editor will take another stab at trying to present it coherently.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ok
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Im here
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Lori-from-Iowa More than 1 year ago
What I found most interesting about this book were the facts. It was interesting to me to learn the laws of slavery back then. Not a lot of story, but it was just facts of the case. Interesting.
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With all the time I put into reading this book, I sure expected a different ending. Not one that had more questions! It was frustrating, while reading the book, even she didn't really know who she was...now that is the saddest part of all! The part I find really unreal, these birth marks on her had to tell people something. Why was it questioned about so much? It is not like you can just dab on birth marks at will. I just didn't like the ending.